Click Click Expose

January 3, 2010

The Top 10 LGBT stories of 2009

Now that 2010 is officially here, I thought it would be interesting to look back at 2009 to see how far we have come as an community.  For a lot of us (me included) 2009 was a horrible year; however, there were some positives that we can embrace.  This top 10 listing was culled from research done at the Bilerico Project blog and writer Bil Browning:

Number 10: Adam Lambert, Lady Gaga & Chaz Bono reveal themselves to the world!

Lambert, Lady Gaga and Bono

Lambert, Lady Gaga and Bono

So what happens when you don’t tuck properly – you get embarrassed (or at the least) you shock your adoring audience.  Thus the country’s revelation that Lady Gaga is bisexual or transgendered.  Did it hurt her career?  Not in the least, as she continues to sell records by the thousands.  Adam Lambert of American Idol fame came out of the closet and also caused quite a stir by simulating a sex act at the American Music Awards – thus confirming the double standard that its okay for straight folks to do it in public but gay folks can’t.  Finally, Chaz Bono came out stating he was beginning his “transition” thus helping to bring the issues of transgendered people to the forefront.
Number 9:  Stonewall Riots – history repeat itself once again.

The police are at it again

The police are at it again

The Stonewall Riots may have occurred in 1969 but that hasn’t stopped history from repeating itself again.  Texas ABC agents and Ft. Worth Police stormed the opening of a gay bar sending one man with brain injuries to the hospital.  Texas ABC ended up firing two of its agents for the incident while the Ft. Worth Police maintained the patron brought the injuries onto himself.  Is police brutality on the rise?  Is police brutality against gay folks on the rise?  Ask many people and they will tell you yes.

Number 8: Can California overturn Prop 8?

It was originally a 2008 story- California voters denying same-sex marriage.  In 2009, attempts were made and failed to overturn Prop 8 with the right hiring top gun lawyers and forming all kinds of new political action groups.   Will a new measure hit the ballots in 2010 or 2012?  Only time will tell.  The most important question to ask is “will the people of California finally realize that gay marriage is not something to be scarred of.”

Is Obama for Gay Rights?

Is Obama for Gay Rights?

Number 7: The Justice Department says DOMA is okay?

Although this created a stir in the gay community and a backlash against President Obama, it’s result comes as no surprise.  DOMA is legal and on the books; so when the Justice Department had to make a statement because of a legal challenge – surprise- they had to defend the current law.  Who would have thunk it!!  Somehow (of course) that defense was translated to Obama doesn’t want to help the LGBT community and all of a sudden, the community is up in arms.  Will DOMA get overturn on Obama’s watch?  Hopefully.  Will don’t ask, don’t tell get repealed?  Probably.  But 2009 was a nightmare for the country and you can only do so much.  I think our community needs to have just a little patience – after all – if McCain was in office – we would never get what we want.

Number 6:  The LGBT print media doesn’t recognize changing times.

The LGBT print media suffered from the same fate as its hetero counterparts.  Not recognizing that the public has steadily moved away (for years) from print media in favor of the more convenient online services.  It is surprising considering that many LGBT folks get their information exclusively online, you would think that publications like “The Washington Blade,” TWIT,” David’s Magazine,” “Southern Voice,” – would realize this and change their strategy.  Nope, didn’t happen and as a result many respected and important voices in the gay community were silenced.  11 papers and counting – not to mention that the advent of the gay book store is suffering as well (my partner and I have always wanted to run our own book store and cafe).  It’s all about the internet now!!

Number 5:  Congress says “yes” to HIV travelers.

When it comes to basic civil liberties for LGBT folks, it seems that the world gets it right before the U.S. does.  It took a while, but Congress this year finally repealed the ban on HIV + travelers to this country.  The ban represented one of the darkest moments for this country as we systemically discriminated against people with HIV while there was no scientific basis for the ban.  The rest of the world admonished us for it – Obama recognized it was wrong and ended it.

Number 4:  A March on Washington Returns!

I remember when I was a field producer in 1993 helping to produce a video for the  March on Washington in ’93.  It was an amazing experience considering I was struggling with coming out to myself.  I wanted to be in Washington in 2009 for this historic march – the National Equality March that brought over 250,000 people to the nation’s capital.  What was extraordinary about this march?  It was originally shunned by many, fearing cost and support.  But a grass-roots campaign and national support from celebrities got the ball running and in 6 short months, the march was put together at a cost south of $200,000.  Far cheaper and faster than any major march for LGBT rights on record.

Number 3:  Activist win the fight in Washington and Kalamazoo – but lose in Maine.

Of course, if you listen to the right – gay folks are out to ruin the nation and convert our children and their was not shortness of rhetoric in the 2009 year.  But a few victories were achieved.  Kalamazoo upheld their law outlawing discrimination against LGBT people.  Washington “upgrades” its domestic partnership law which includes many (if not all) of the benefits and protections afforded heterosexual couples.  Maine on the other hand, overturned the same-sex marriage law – leaving only Civil Unions in place.

Number 2:  And then there was 6?

So you are a gay couple and you want to get married.  A few years ago, you had to travel to Canada or take a trip to the Netherlands.  Not anymore. 6 states have allowed same-sex marriages: Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont (despite the Republican Governor’s veto), New Hampshire and Washington DC.  Progress is slow but it’s coming.

Number 1:  Pro Gay Legislation makes history!

President Obama signed into law the first pro-LGBT piece of legislation in United States history when he put his signature on the

A Victory for the Shepard Family

A Victory for the Shepard Family

Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act. The legislation was first proposed a decade before after Shepard, a gay college student from Wyoming, was beaten and tied to a fence to die. Contributor Cathy Renna was one of the first LGBT activists to reach Matthew’s hospital bedside and worked with his mother, Judy Shepard to ensure passage of the legislation. The new law has already been instrumental in forcing an investigation into the death of Puerto Rican teenager Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado.

So there you have it – 10 issues that have made a difference in the live of gay and lesbian people all over the country.  Here’s hoping for bigger and better things in 2010.

Thomas

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August 8, 2009

Miami International Closetball DVD Ready

Lashawn Chanel as a boy in the closetball

Lashawn Chanel as a boy in the closetball

 

Pageant folks in the south know all about the closetballs – where you come out as a man in the presentation category and then return a hour later as a woman in evening gown and talent.  The transformations are exciting to watch and you really get to appreciate what drag is all about.  Well the 1st Annual Miami Closetball was held last month in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and Lashawn Denne Chanel was crown the winner.  Mercedes Monroe was 1st runner up and Jazzlyln Sanchez was 2nd runner up.

I have finish the editing of this video which comes in at just over 2 hours and 5 minutes.  I am authoring the DVD as I write this (this pageant will be on 2 disks) and the entire process will be finished in the next couple of hours.  You can order the dvd via our Shopping Web Page.  I am also going to put up a video of one of the entertainers that was at the pageant – Tiona Love and interpersed through that video you will see the contestants that competed.  The video will be up on our video sharing website: Planet Q TV.

Enjoy the dvd, the preview trailer and this year’s closetball from Miami.

Thomas

Lashawn as a women in this year's closetball

Lashawn as a women in this year's closetball

April 27, 2009

Congratulations Leah Halston – Miss Platinum Gem City 2009

It’s nice to be in a city that is not too big, not too crowded and I can get through airport security in 5 minutes instead of 45 minutes.  I am sitting in the Columbus, OH airport waiting to go back to Miami and I have forgotten how nice it is to be in a quiet city.  Yesterday coming back from filming a wedding just north of Ft. Lauderdale – I was sitting in traffic for 45 minutes – 5 lanes stacked at 11:45 at night – ONLY IN MIAMI!!

Anyway, I want to say congratulations to Leah Halston for winning this year’s Miss Platinum Gem City Pageant.  Tionna Luv came in as runner up.  It appeared that Leah was the crowd favorite at the pageant that was held at the Axis Club – a nice small club in the heart of the restaurant club district (at least it seemed like it) – very gay friendly – why can’t we have that in Miami – you would think!!

Pictures and a preview trailer will follow once I get back and can upload the footage I shot.  BIG PROPS TO BAR MANAGER (and jack of trades Robby) – who was relentless all night in trying to solve why I wasn’t getting any audio from the DJ booth.  Club owners should really spend just a little extra money to have the right set of mixers and amps in their booths – I never understood why DJs get shorted out in this area – especially when these clubs rent out their places for shows and other events.  Patching things all over the place is not the way to go – but hey what can you do.  BUT ROBBY was awesome – he figured it out even while the show was going on and even while he had to tend to his bar duties.

I also want to say thank you to the entire Platinum Gem family who was very gracious and accomodating.  So congratulations Leah on your win and on Tionna on your placement.  More coming soon.

Thomas

April 1, 2009

Congratulations Amirra Roberts and Nikki Sanchez

Hey pageant fans – had a great time at the 2009 Tri-County Newcomer Plus Pageant and the 2009 Tri-County ClosetBall held at Club Revolution in Orlando, Florida.  We want to say congratulations to the ClosetBall Winner Amirra L. Roberts and to the Newcomer Plus Winner Nikki F. Sanchez.  DVDs are on sale for now for $20.00 at our website at: www.clickclickexpose.com.  Below are some pictures from the crowning ceremony.  Thanks to all those who came by and said hello and those who I met for the first time.  Pay per view should be ready in about 3 weeks.  Thanks.

Nikki and Amirra - Winners of the 2009 Tri County Pageant

Nikki and Amirra - Winners of the 2009 Tri County PageantNikki Sanchez - 2009 Tri-County Newcomer Plus

Amirra L. Roberts - 2009 Tri-County Closetball

Amirra L. Roberts - 2009 Tri-County Closetball

2008/2009 Newcomer Plus Winners - Nikki Sanchez & Milani Couture Royal

2008/2009 Newcomer Plus Winners - Nikki Sanchez & Milani Couture Royal

 

Nikki F. Sanchez - 2009 Tri-County Newcomer Plus

Nikki F. Sanchez - 2009 Tri-County Newcomer Plus

October 3, 2008

John Barrowman & the Torchwood TV Show

Torchwood Team

Torchwood Team

If you are a sci fi fan like myself, then you know the actor John Barrowman.  Mr. sexy with his bi-love interest Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto) in the BBC hit TV show “Torchwood.”  It’s an off shoot of Doctor Who where the 51st century time traveller has taken up residence in Cardiff fighting aliens in the city.  Well the actor is openly gay and does not hide that fact (way to go John) and I found this video of him on You Tube that celebrates his relationship with his partner of 16 years Scott Gill.  It goes to show you that you can have a successful acting career and still be out, proud and gay.  My hats off to them both.  Can’t wait for season 3 of Torchwood do out sometime in May of 2009 in the UK and shortly afterwards here in America on BBC America.

 

Thomas

June 25, 2008

Where have all the guys gone? – Pageant Soup Podcast Show #37

Pageant Soup Podcast Show - Episode Number 37

It’s almost the middle of the year and we have some exciting shows in the future. We know a lot of you are talking about Miss Duval and Sweetheart Newcomer and we will touch on those topics in the coming weeks, BUT this week on the Pageant Soup Podcast Show we welcome guest host Marlowe Rainbow as we tackle “Where have all the guys gone? – Male Pageantry in 2008.” It appears that male pageantry may be on a slow start this year, we talk about the challenges, successes and opportunities that face male pageantry in 2008. We invite all current and former male title holders to get in on the discussion and share with us your opionions and thoughts.

The show airs live tomorrow June 25th at 7pm Eastern Standard Time. Visit our website to listen live or simply subscribe via iTunes and have all of the shows downloaded to you every week for free.

Live call in with 5 phone lines and chat room & email will be open so you can make your comments and ask your questions. Happy listening and thanks for your continued support. We will see you all tomorrow at 7 pm EST. It will be a fun 30 minutes!!

Thomas (Show Producer)

June 6, 2008

Shae Shae Lareese on Pageant Soup Podcast Show – Episode #34

We were happy to talk to Shae Shae Lareese – the current 2008 Mis USofA classic pageant winner on Episode 34 of the Pageant Soup Podcast Show.  At age 40, Shae Shae came out of retirement to put together a fabulous package to win the crown.

Shae Shae Larees - Episode Number 34

Shae Shae’s given name is Edwared Mcneely. He is 40 yrs old and was born in the beautiful island of Puerto Rico.. The oldest of 4, he moved to the states at the age of 14 to Orlando, Fl to get away from the hurricanes and crime. His dad wanted all of his kids to graduate in the United States to get a better education and to learn proper englis.  Shae Shae graduated from Oak Ridge high school in 1987 and started to work for Walt Disney World as a ticket sales ageant and also as PLUTO.  He started  coming out at the age of 19, sneaking into the gay bars especially the Parliament House.  He met a wonderful entertainer by the name of Angel Sheridan who took him under his wing.  Shae Shae was a back up male dancer for Angel.  After seeing Angel Sheridan win all of these beauty pageants,  he wanted to compete and took off running – he was hooked ever since.  Shae Shae has worked as a female illusionist at the Parliament House, Tracks of Tampa and many other clubs.  Shae Shae started competing in national pageants in 1995 and has completed and placed in the top 5 of Miss Gay US of A pageant, Miss Gay America, Miss National, and Entertainer of the Year.  Currently residing in Laguna Beach, California for the last 4 years, Shae Shae is employed at The Ritz Carlton Hotel as a head server of  a fine dining restaurant.  By far his biggest accomplishment and most rewarding experience was recently capturing the title of Miss GAY USofA CLASSIC pageant which he touts as achieving one of the biggest goals in his life.

We want to congratulate Shae Shae for a fine job and we are proud that she asked Click Click Expose to assist in editing her presentation video for her pageant win.  You can watch the video that won her the presentation category on Planet Q TV or listen to the podcast show at: www.clickclickexpose.com.  Enjoy everyone.

Thomas (Show Producer)

June 3, 2008

Congratulations Crystle Chambers….Miss Gay Florida America 2008

Thank you for the many fans and friends who came up to say hello to me (Adrian) and continue to support us as we continue to bring you the best in pageant videos.  Our cameras were in Orlando, Florida to film the Miss Gay Florida America pageant.  It was a fabulous pageant that had 13 contestants running for the title and the competition was hot.  Look for the video and preview clips within the week as Thomas will be working on the video this week.  We say congratulations to Crystal Chambers who took the crown.  Also thanks to Coco Montrese and Chantel Reshae who gave us props and kudos that night – thanks everyone.

We are always happy when you share with us your concerns, your comments and your suggestions on how we can do better and offer more to our dedicated fans.  Please take a moment and look at the newly design Planet Q TV, check out our podcast shows (especially pageant fans – we have a podcast show just for you), our music page, our pay per view and let us know what else you would like to see.  And thanks for coming by to say hello.

Look for us in Baltimore in July as we will be filming International Week 2008. 

Adrian

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